August 24, 2022
Over the years of experimenting with summer salads, this black bean mango salad settled as a favorite. It not only tastes better the next day, but it also keeps for days as the sharp taste of celery mellows and nestles in with the black beans and mango. The season for the small, skinny Atulfo mango variety is almost over, the next best is the larger rounded Kent or Hayden. Do make sure to let the mangoes ripen to a soft sweetness before making the salad.
1 cup dry black beans
2 to 3 mangoes
2 to 3 large celery stalks with tops
1 serrano pepper
1 bunch cilantro or parsley
3 to 4 lemons
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1½ teaspoons sea salt
Makes 4-6 servings
Soak the beans overnight. Drain, combine with 3 to 4 cups of water in a medium-sized stockpot, and bring to a boil. Skim any foam or residue that may have risen to the top or pour some of it out. Add more water if needed then cover and let the beans simmer for an hour or until cooked through and soft. Drain and let them cool.
Mince the celery and celery tops and serrano pepper. In a large mixing bowl, combine the celery with the drained black beans. Discard the bottom 2 to 3 inches of the cilantro bunch and mince the rest and add to the celery.
Peel the mangoes and cube into ½-inch pieces and combine with the salad.
In a small frying pan, warm the olive oil and pop the cumin seeds. They will sizzle and splutter a little, immediately turn the heat off. Add the garlic to the hot oil and let it rest for a minute or two. Pour into the black bean salad mix. Add the salt and juice from 3 lemons. Toss and taste — add more lemon if needed.
Diced tomatoes or avocados may also be added to this salad; however, it will get mushy and may not keep for as many days.
Grilled corn kernels are a wonderful addition, too.
Red, garbanzo or white beans also work in this salad.
December 02, 2022